City, residents file final arguments against pipeline

Jennifer Moreau
Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan at an anti-Kinder Morgan rally. The city is opposed to the pipeline expansion plan and filed its final argument against the project on Tuesday.   Photograph By file

The worst possible project in the worst possible location – that’s what the City of Burnaby is claiming with respect to the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion, as the National Energy Board hearing enters the final argument stage for intervenors.

Burnaby outlined the written portion of its argument in a 148-page document filed with the National Energy Board Tuesday, citing a litany of concerns around the project.  

The issues include a lack of social license, inadequate hearings and potential oil spills. The city also raised concerns about risks associated with the Westridge Marine Terminal and the Burnaby Mountain tank farm, both set for expansion should Kinder Morgan secure approval.   

The $6.8-billion expansion “is arguably the worst possible project in the worst possible location” the city stated in five-page press release.

“We will continue to fight this project that does not have social license and has not been required to undergo appropriate social and environmental reviews,” Mayor Derek Corrigan added.

The city is one of several intervenors that will also present final oral arguments at the Delta Burnaby Hotel and Conference Centre, starting on Tuesday, Jan. 19. Burnaby Residents Opposing Kinder Morgan Expansion is planning a rally and march to mark the first day, and ForestEthics is organizing a second rally for Saturday, Jan. 23.

BROKE also filed its final argument on Jan. 12 and is presenting its final argument on Thursday, Jan. 28.

“The risks the projects poses to Burnaby resident are unacceptable, based on the fact we live in a seismically active zone, and the main concern around that is the tank farm on Burnaby Mountain and the fact we live in a densely populated area,” said spokesperson Ruth Walmsley.

Meanwhile, Corrigan penned a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, imploring the Liberals to halt the hearings and expedite changes to the review process. Walmsley supports the mayor’s suggestion.  

“Why are they wasting everyone’s time and money with this process that no one believes in? It’s crazy,” she said.

BROKE was planning to meet with Liberal MP Terry Beech on Thursday, after NOW deadlines, to share the organization’s concerns. BROKE is also fundraising to cover legal costs from participating in the hearing. The group’s goal is to raise $10,000.

“We have spent the last two years preparing to represent the concerns of Burnaby resident before the NEB, an we’ve commissioned expert testimony on earthquake risks and health risks, and we need to raise some money to complete this final stage,” said Walmsley.   

For more information on the campaign, go to


Clarification: A story in our Wednesday edition about the ForestEthics rally was missing the date of the event; it’s set for Saturday, Jan. 23. BROKE is organizing the Tuesday, Jan. 19 march and rally. Apologies for any confusion caused.